In a star-studded event at the White House on Tuesday, President Barack Obama awarded 21 Presidential Medals of Freedom to celebrities including Diana Ross, Robert DeNiro, and The Boss himself, Bruce Springsteen.

"I am the president. He is the Boss," President Obama said Tuesday according to ABC News. "For decades Bruce…has brought us all along on a journey consumed with the bargains between ambition and injustice, and pleasure and pain — the simple glories and scattered heartbreak of everyday life in America."

Representing the highest honor a president can bestow on a civilian, Medals of Freedom are reserved for individuals who are deemed to have made "meritorious contributions to the security or national interests of the United States, to world peace, or to cultural or other significant public or private endeavors," the White House said  last week.

Springsteen's contributions in that arena came in the form of his extensive catalog of music, which helps to "capture the pain and the promise of the American experience," an announcer said at Tuesday's ceremony.

"With empathy and honesty, he holds up a mirror to who we are as Americans chasing our dreams, and as human beings trying to do the right thing," the announcer said this week. "There's a place for everyone in Bruce Springsteen's America."

Other recipients this year included Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Ellen DeGeneres, Bill and Melinda Gates, Tom Hanks, Michael Jordan, and Lorne Michaels, among others.

Watch the full ceremony below: